Review: Book of Love, by Julia Talbot (Rating: 2/5)

Book of Love, by Julia Talbot
Publisher: Samhain Publishing (June 30, 2015)
Page Count: approx. 110 pages
Genre: Threesome (M/F/M) Erotica/Romance

Rating: 2 out of 5 (what’s this mean?)

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Cover Artist: Leah Kaye Suttle

Cover Artist: Leah Kaye Suttle

Summary: When Shiloh volunteers to watch her friend’s bookstore for a few days, she doesn’t expect anything exciting to happen. But when she finds a strange book on the shelf– a book filled with erotic drawings and strange symbols– she unknowingly unlocks a sexually-charged dark magic spell. Liam and Elijah, online friends who explore the paranormal, are called into the town to help, and get drawn into the sexual energy of the summoning with Shiloh.

My Thoughts: This novella is basically just a PWP– porn without plot. Or rather, there is a plot, but the plot exists solely to create as much erotica as possible, with little care given to anything else. Not that this is a bad thing! The erotica was pretty damn smokin’, and the three characters are gorgeous together.

The TV went on and, barring the fact they were naked, being hunted by a demon and relative strangers, it was totally normal.

Yeah, that about sums it up. Three strangers come together because of a magical sex spell, and can’t resist the attraction between them. A lot of sex follows. But honestly, I didn’t have a problem with the fact that this was just an erotica short novel.

No, the problem I had with this novella was that it didn’t appear to be proof-read. Samhain Publishing lists an editor on their site, but if that’s the case then I must have received an un-proofed copy or something. There were glaring errors, moments that seemed completely odd and out of character; in general, it just seems like no one checked this over for consistency. Disappointing, for a work from one of my favorite publishers.

For example, three different times in the novel the characters discuss whose room they left the magic book in:

“We’ll go to Liam’s room.” Elijah chuckled. “We left the book in mine.” (ePub version, Page 47)

Good thing they’d remembered the book was in his room and went to Elijah’s room instead. (Page 49)

He held her closer, heading up the stairs to his room. Was it in his or Liam’s? Damn it.
“Which room?”
“I think it was in Liam’s.” He tugged her up the stairs. (Page 90)

This might actually be a result of poor formatting and grammar in the story, but it’s still an issue!

Normally, for a story that’s more sex than plot, I wouldn’t mind too much about the little things. But this book was filled with little things like this, and it was seriously detrimental to my enjoyment. It wasn’t just the editing, though… the writing itself had me grinding to a halt at times. Some of the language was too heavy on the internet-speak, almost immature, and was strange in the context of the story:

Elijah almost skidded right into her, panting. Liam shouted, running for the window. “Shoo! Go away! Run.”
Elijah stared for a second, then joined in. “Get the fuck away from her, you asshat!”
Shiloh didn’t know whether to jibber with fear or dissolve into laughter. Her stalwart protectors. The… dude… stared at her, then shimmered, seeming to dissolve.
“Woo.” Liam fist-pumped the air. (Page 62)

Seriously?

This novella had a lot going for it… the sex scenes are hot, the characters are interesting. But I really struggled to stay with the story while reading, because of the poor quality of the writing and editing.

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